Hated baking bread? Here are 10 new 'quaranhobbies' to try this spring
Sourdough is so 2020.
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If you’ve abandoned your sourdough starter by this point or dropped off the seemingly never-ending bread-baking train (except you, dad, you keep baking, I love your work), you might be in the market for a new hobby. With spring in full swing and the weather changing, there are plenty of new seasonal hobbies to add to your rotation, as well as evergreen hobbies you may not have yet tried. Staving off the quarantine monotony is as easy as trying something new: from games to treats to the most adorable crocheted creatures I've ever witnessed, here are 10 hobbies that can carry you into the summer and beyond.
1. Making your own ice cream
A slightly more seasonal culinary hobby, ice cream making is actually more difficult than your fourth grade science class made it seem. Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams is well-known for its boundary-pushing ice cream flavors, and with the Jeni's cookbook, you can not only start to develop your own ice cream skills, but you can instantly become the absolute favorite of your family or friend group.
Oh—and you'll need a high-quality ice cream maker, like the best one we tested, the Cuisinart ICE-21. It's easy to use, simple to store, and will have you making your own innovative flavors in no time.
- Get the Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams cookbook for $15
- Get the Cuisinart 1.5 Quart Ice Cream Maker from Amazon for $69.95
2. Crocheting some Woobles
I didn't know what Woobles were before now, and now that I've found out, I'm seriously considering picking up a kit. Woobles are crochet plushie kits for beginners that will provide you with everything you need to learn to crochet a cute little animal at the beginner or intermediate level. If you need an activity for yourself and your kids, or else just want to make a tiny little penguin for yourself, then definitely check out the kits the Woobles has to offer. Our managing editor Meghan Kavanaugh raves about the Wooble kit she completed, noting that she had so much fun with it that she wants to actively pick up crocheting now.
3. Solving (fake) crimes
This one is for the true-crime obsessed: A subscription service that literally lets you solve crimes. Fake ones, of course, but they won't feel fake with the sheer amount of evidence and clues you receive each week. Hunt A Killer allows you to subscribe to different crime stories, meaning you can pick the best one that represents your interests. You can find out who murdered a budding starlet or discover why a ghost is haunting an old mansion. Episodes come once a month or—if you're ambitious—all at once. We loved playing with Hunt A Killer when we tested it, and highly recommend it for any budding detectives looking for a fun new activity.
4. Finally committing to yoga
Yoga is a great way to decompress and can be performed in your home as long as you have a yoga mat and instructions. There are plenty of beginners sets you can check out on YouTube for free to get started, but if you want a more hands-on learning experience you can also sign-up for app-based yoga instruction through websites like Alo Moves and the free app Yoga for Beginners.
As the weather gets warmer, hiking is back on the menu depending on where you live. Hiking is a great outdoors group activity that can be easily performed with a mask on and distancing requirements in place, so if you've been looking for ways to get outdoors or get out of the city you live in, consider researching the best hiking trails close to you or using the American Hiking Society's hiking map to pick your route. Break out your hiking boots, gather up your gear, and start trekking.
6. Making your own home decor
With so much time spent inside, people have been turning to artisanal crafts more and more as a way to pass the time, and what better hobby is there than making your own home decor? We rounded up all the ways that people are making their own decorations, from macrame to embroidery, so take a look at our guide and figure out what you want to make. We are big fans of We Are Knitters, so we recommend giving their knitting and crocheting DIY home decor kits a try.
- Get the Sky Cushion Crochet Kit from We Are Knitters for $60
- Get the Izamal Cushion Knitting Kit from We Are Knitters for $99
7. Making your own jewelry
My mom was a jeweler, and I can tell you from firsthand experience that making jewelry is both harder than it looks and extremely rewarding. Jewelry-making is a hobby that will grow as you do, becoming second nature the more you put time into learning the ins and outs of creating pieces. Start with something simple, such as earrings, and work your way toward creating your own designs.
Once you've mastered making jewelry, brace yourself to handle all your friends' repair jobs and to become quickly obsessed with sourcing new and beautiful beads.
- Get started with jewelry-making with Bead Jewelry Making for Beginners from Bookshop for $13.79
- Get the Jewelry Making Start Kit from GreatFindsCrafts on Etsy for $44.99
It kind of goes without saying, but spring is a perfect time to get into gardening. The weather supports picking up the hobby, and we're early enough in the season that any failures you have will be learning experiences for the summer months. If you've never gardened before, check out our guide to quick-turnaround spring gardening. You can get this lovely build-your-own gardening kit from Etsy to get you started, or else visit your local garden center or nursery to get some tips on what's in season and how best to grow in your area.
If you're not able to garden in a backyard, consider installing an indoor herb garden to brighten up your kitchen and provide you with spring herbs all year round.
9. Making your own pickles
Pickled red onions! Pickled green beans! Straight up pickles! Pickling has been all the rage for a while now, but with seasonal vegetables starting to reign over grocery aisles, starting a spring pickle stock is easier than ever. Pickling is one of those things that you'll start doing and never stop doing—the allure of having ready-made pickled onions in the fridge is too great. Check out our guide to pickling and get started with your spring vegetables and herbs today.
10. Playing tabletop RPGs
While the tabletops are mostly virtual at the moment, playing tabletop roleplaying games like Dungeons & Dragons and Vampire: The Masquerade is a great way to pass the time during the remaining quarantine period. The hobby lends itself extremely well to an all-online model, since most of what you'll be doing is telling a story together—I can vouch for the success of playing online since it's pretty much all I've been doing for the last year or so. Tabletop RPGs are an excellent way to connect with your friends, build new memories, and flex your creative muscles. If you're looking for a virtual tabletop, try getting started with Roll20 or DndBeyond.
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